Bournonville Technique: Beautiful Illusion

In many ways ballet is a beautiful illusion. It seems the dancers are floating, flying through their steps and soaring through the air. But ballet requires a connection to the earth, a rolling up through the pointe shoes. A very sturdy core. Strong legs and pointed feet.


This is especially true in the Bournonville technique of Napoli (see Julie Niekrasz, Cecily Khuner, and Bryn Gilbert above), with its bare bones attention to form. The dancers must be sharp and exact in their lower half and soft in their upper body and arms. The effect the audience sees can't take place without this strength and connection. It might seem ballet is not of this earth, but without a connection to the earth it couldn't happen.

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Posted by Joan Biddle at 4:23 PM
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